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Fifa still fighting for moral authority to lead the game

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David Bond | 19:07 UK time, Saturday, 23 July 2011

Sepp Blatter will be pleased.

With Fifa's ethics committee throwing the book at Mohamed Bin Hammam, his one-time rival for the presidency, Blatter will feel he has started to deliver on his promises to steer the Fifa ship back onto the right course.

But if Fifa is to regain its moral authority to lead world football, then Saturday's decision to ban Bin Hammam for life for bribery must be the start of a new era for the organisation.

In an article for the New York Times earlier this week, Ronald K Noble, the secretary general of Interpol, underlined the crisis Fifa is facing.

He argued that, at a time when the threat from match fixing has never been greater, "public confidence in Fifa's ability to police itself is at its lowest point ever".

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Bin Hammam's ban suggests that Fifa might have finally got the message. In the last eight months, one-third of Fifa's 24-man executive committee have faced allegations of corruption (admittedly with varying degrees of seriousness and substance).

Three have now been banned (Bin Hammam, Amos Adamu and Reynald Temarii) and a fourth (Jack Warner) resigned rather than face the music.

But there will be critics who argue that Fifa should go further.

For starters it needs to come up with a more coherent and structured plan for rooting out corruption and corrupt officials inside its own organisation.

Blatter's invitation to the singer Placido Domingo to join a new council of wise men to assess the challenges facing the game was beyond parody.

A stronger independent investigations unit and ethics committee must be a priority.

Then Blatter must push through reforms to the way Fifa chooses World Cup hosts and its leading officials. Never again can such important international decisions be taken in private by such a small group of unaccountable men.

But is there really the appetite for change?

One only has to remember the angry reaction FA chairman David Bernstein received when he stood up during the Fifa congress and called for a postponement of the presidential election until all the corruption claims were investigated.

Bin Hammam claimed the case against him was politically motivated while Warner said the culture of gifts had been around inside Fifa for years. Why was Bin Hammam exposed now, on the eve of the presidential election against Blatter?

If such suspicions are to be dispelled once and for all, then today's verdict on Bin Hammam must be the first step on a long road.

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    Firmly shutting an empty stable. The reigns of corruption were surely passed over months ago. I meaningless act by a meaningless body. The surface of corruption merely scratched, the cash cow in place ready to be milked by organised crime.

  • Comment number 2.

    It's really amazing that Qatar's successful World Cup hosting bid is being completely overshadowed by the totally unethical FIFA Presidential bid from the same quarter.

    Crazy how these same people went from saint to sinner in only a matter of weeks.

  • Comment number 3.

    Couldn't agree more with the Bear.
    This fiasco and Blatter's unwillingness (or incapacity) to use 21st century technology just about sum up how far behind the times FIFA is. Or maybe it's because there's too much dirty washing floating around for anyone to pull the plug on the machine.

  • Comment number 4.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 5.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    What was wrong with what i said?

  • Comment number 8.

    One down, One more to go. and we all know who that is don't we Boys and Girls

  • Comment number 9.

    The BBC is no different to FIFA - silencing all critics who decide to speak up. Goodbye David i won't be using your blogs any more:)

  • Comment number 10.

    David- It looks convincing doesn't it?

    However what about Bin Hamman's appeal, when will this be held?

    If after such an appeal the result stands and Mr Bin Hamman retains his life time ban (reputedly this type of ban has never been heard of before at Fifa) and he no longer has anything to do with international and domestic football, then maybe, just maybe Fifa has turned a corner....but don't hold your breath!

  • Comment number 11.

    The guy has a charmed life. Re-election unapposed (eventually). Goal Line technology?? Not holding my breath. Got to be every reason now to re examine Qatar. Football is only mirroring politics all smoke and mirrrors. Who can blame them. My kids (mid twenties) have spoken of conspiracy theories for several years there is a lot of evidence emerging to support it!

  • Comment number 12.

    Is it just Blatter trying to make an example of his rival? I wonder if this could lead to a split in FIFA and two codes of the game emerging...

  • Comment number 13.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 14.

    Maybe time for the English FA to take their ball and go home?

  • Comment number 15.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 16.

    Would be interesting to see how far adherance to the Bribery Act 2010 might constrain our appearance at the next FIFA World Cup. Ministry of Justice guidance states

    2.2 Whatever the size, structure or market of a commercial organisation, top-level management commitment to bribery prevention is likely to include (1) communication of the organisation’s anti-bribery stance, and (2) an appropriate degree of involvement in developing bribery prevention procedures.

    We Brits only do it better than anyone else in the world and put it in a law!

  • Comment number 17.

    Unfortunately the reputation of FIFA has sunk so low in my view that this seems as if Bin Hammam is being punished for opposing Blatter rather than for corrupt practices.

  • Comment number 18.

    Too little too late, as befits FIFA.
    I look forward to the court case(s), when all the evidence and allegations can come out in the open. I trust FIFA not one iota, and this banning is meaningless i my opinion.
    Very likely more of a cover-up than a punishment if FIFA are running true to form.

  • Comment number 19.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 20.

    Surely, given this man's seniority in the Qatari association, someone must look at the ethics surrounding Qatar's successful 2022 WC bid. FIFA is a circus. Too little, too late.

  • Comment number 21.

    Farce!

  • Comment number 22.

    I'd be tempted to say that the problem is Sepp Blatter appears to be the biggest crook of the lot, but if I did the BBC might delete the comment, so I won't say it, I'll just think it instead.

  • Comment number 23.

    Out of curiosity what would happen if domestic football associations gave a vote of no confidence to FIFA, would these associations be banned from entering continental competitions (Euro's, Champions League, Europa League, etc) and the World cup or would FIFA be forced to act or even be dissolved?

    I'm pretty sure a major football tournament without any major teams would get very few viewers, therefore less monetary gain for FIFA, which seems to be what football is all about these days. So maybe this is the only way to force FIFA into making some sort of action, as its going to overshadow any football played in the near future.

    One last thing, if FIFA can't clean up its own act, then how is it supposed to regulate the game. After all it'll just be hypocritical!

  • Comment number 24.

    Surely FIFA can only start to clean up its act once Blatter has gone?

  • Comment number 25.

    Sepp is in until his retirement. Besides the information stifling set up in Switzerland, this almost casual brush aside for anyone that dared to oppose him, and a good degree of media manipulation by 'leaking' views before the hearing, this is beyond farce. I don't think any other single sporting body on the planet could get away with it.

    The envelopes and expenses will continue, just more discretely, until somebody somewhere actually DOES something about it. Trouble is that many of the assembly don't want to rock the gravy train ... woops, I mean boat ...

  • Comment number 26.

    Bin Hammam should explain that he won the World Cup for Qatar thro' bribery so was very surprised to be indicted for bribery when going for Fifa presidency

  • Comment number 27.

    Blatter was in charge when all this corruption took place.  In any other job his position would be untenable. FIFA will continue to have no credibility whilst he is in charge.  The FA should walk away. How long will FIFA last without the biggest league in the World?

  • Comment number 28.

    FIFA acted in the face of overwhelmingly strong evidence , this does not represent in any way a change of direction . Once the accusations became public it would be impossible to sweep under the carpet , Warner should receive some kind of condemnation as well from FIFA but they did nothing after previous impropriety by Warner and they brought this on themselves . They will doggedly stick by the line , provide evidence and do nothing internally , there is a saying , there is no smoke without fire . If there is a whiff of smoke FIFA should act however what they want to see is an inferno, firemen and a man who is holding some matches . True change is to be proactive and not reactive , until then its business as usual .

  • Comment number 29.

    Why do these international organisations always go the same way? Corruption is a concept that is not alien to certain nations, in fact some would say its a normal way of doing business. Maybe it's time to look at the composition of the committees, stop worrying about political correctness and put people on the FIFA board that can be trusted and have a basic code of ethics.

  • Comment number 30.

    This is not the last we have heard of this story and Bin Hamaam will not just go away and lie down quietly. Football is all he has. This will go to the Court of Arbitration for sport and then the evidence that was presented to the 'ethics commitee' will be tried in a real court. Then the skeletons are literally going to fly out of the closets and this will just run and run. Blatter's FIFA are going to be mired in litigation either until the end of their terms or the final verdict wil just coincide wtih the next world cup in 3 years time. We won't know how deep the problems are at FIFA until then and I am very surprised that the first step on a long road has been used as if FIFA have hit rock bottom.This is the first step down on a very long road until we actually scrape bottom!! Not the road away from it.

    The Premier League saying they will use goalline technology in 2012 suggest we may be pulling away from the mire separately and for once I would say to the English FA follow the premier league's lead on this.

  • Comment number 31.

    Short blog, not a lot in it really.

    I think the general concensus is that FIFA will remain a joke as long as Blatter is in charge.

  • Comment number 32.

    I don't think this has anything to do with Qatar's bid. Hammam was just bribing his voters to stand a chance in the election. That's all it is really.
    Good decision by FIFA, but what you have to wonder is if the real winner in all this is Sepp Blatter. The man's reputation is getting worse by the day, he managed to win the election unopposed. How come nobody else wished to stand for election? I think Blatter is the one who needs to be investigated. The man is getting old, so this should be taken into respects.

  • Comment number 33.

    Sepp Blatter is doing a terrific job as President of FIFA and Qatar fully deserved to get the 2022 World Cup and there was no bribery invlved and you can tell it to the marines!

  • Comment number 34.

    The least that can happen now, surely, is for 2022 to be re-bid. Qatar being disqualified. Isn't this logic? Perhaps even 2018? As the current bidding process is so clearly flawed then surely all current hosting decisions need to be re-examined. It was obvious that Russia knew they would win 2018 before the decision was made. Bottom line I think most people cannot understand how football got to be governed by a group like this with an individual like Blatter in charge. But then were things any better under Havelange? Like Hackgate all this shows is that our leaders have been too happy to accept unacceptable influences and practices for so long they have become as tainted as the offenders in the eyes of ordinary people. FIFA has no credibility but then neither has the FA.

  • Comment number 35.

    mr Mohamed Bin Hammam is banned for life. millions of pounds wasted on world cup bids, legal proceedings, appeals, bribes, and the time wasted by me writing this message. a football team that perpetually under achieves. an FA that doesnt know its a&*se from its elbow. do you know what.. england finished today 193 runs ahead against india. lets support our team when they do well, and when they do badly...lets blame FIFA.

  • Comment number 36.

    until the appalling decision to hold the WC in Qatar is vacated, who can possibly have confidence in the integrity of the organization? there are few reasons to justify the decision, and so many reasons why it's ludicrous.

    Reasons for: $$$, there's never been a WC in the middle east (a region of growing football popularity), close proximity of venues, time zone close to Europe

    reasons against: Qatar has never qualified for the WC, Qatar is just too small and with too low a population (as big as Yorkshire with less than half the population) to justify it being a solo host. wasted infrastructure - will there be a continued need for the 9 new 40+K seat stadiums they are building? currently there's one 45k seat & 2 22k seat stadiums. even if the stadiums are downsized afterwards, it still seems vastly excessive and wasteful. the heat (40c), i've spent over a year in Qatar - the heat and humidity are beyond oppressive in the summertime. there's claims that they will cool the stadiums by 20c in a carbon neutral way, but I've yet to see any in depth explanation on how they plan on doing that.
    i won't bother with the various alleged human rights/religious/etc reasons because frankly those kind of faults can be found with almost every country.

    i definitely think you could justify a WC Co-hosted by Qatar & Saudi Arabia, but not Qatar alone.

  • Comment number 37.

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  • Comment number 38.

    It is this simple - unless and until FIFA is run by people of demonstrably good moral standing, it will be impossible for the organisation to cleanse and rehabilitate itself. Unfortunately the amount of change required for this to occur is extremely large, it would need revolution rather than evolution.

    There are very many who believe that Mr Blatter is part of the problem rather than part of the solution, so there is little possibility that the removal of Mr Bin Hammam will ever be seen as "the start of a new era" - it is far more likely that it will be viewed simply as Mr Blatter eliminating a threat to his position.

    A friend of mine proposed this idea - a good person is one who puts the interests of the organisation ahead of any personal gain, and a good organisation ensures that what is good for the organisation and what is good for the individual are always one and the same thing. How do FIFA and Mr Blatter fare when these test are applied to them ?

  • Comment number 39.

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  • Comment number 40.

    With the life ban imposed now it is essential that FIFA look again at the awarding of the 2022 tournament to Qatar. The technical, climatic and tourism aspects of Qatar's bid were very poor. The World Cup should be played in new regions and on continents where it has not been before. The 2010 World Cup in South Africa was wonderful. FIFA got that right, though it was overdue. But the decision must be balanced.

    FIFA also needs to consider are they serious about fair play. Goal line technology is essential. The technology is there already. It will not cost an extra cent. Every spectator can already see the replays of poor/unsighted decisions. The recent scene at the Women's World Cup where a defender held the ball with BOTH hands for a full three seconds as she turned through 180 degrees (and was not penalised) was extraordinary. Australia is entitled to feel grossly disappointed with FIFA in both these matters.

  • Comment number 41.

    I think lesson #1 is that: A boss is a boss. Never compete against a boss. A vice president never competes with current president. If an independent ethics committee had handle the case, he would have gotten a fair trial. Also, that would have exposed more FIFA members. It’s unfortunate he was punished for running against his boss. If he had not run for FIFA presidency, the entire case would have changed

  • Comment number 42.

    Almighty Sir Platter pulling the strings once again. Actually I consider it waste of eyes and intellect reading about fifa, as i honestly believe the organisation can never redeem itself under its current structure. Not until thre is a complete overhaul of fifa to bring it in line with modern business organisation principles and moral cohesion - I will enjoy my soccer and try very very hard to continue to ignore the fifa.

  • Comment number 43.

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  • Comment number 44.

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  • Comment number 45.

    Makes me wonder why Blatter would announce this to be his last term when he can effectively eliminate any rival candidate who has the audacity to stand against him. (A job for life is made that much easier when he's able to rake up dirt on any potential challenger). Let's at least hope that the FA has learnt it's lesson and ceases throwing millions of pounds at futile World Cup bids every four years and instead concentrates the funds towards improving youth development

  • Comment number 46.

    Makes me wonder why Blatter would announce this to be his last term when he can effectively eliminate any rival candidate who has the audacity to stand against him. (A job for life is made that much easier when he's able to rake up dirt on any potential challenger). Let's at least hope the FA has learnt it's lesson from this debacle and ceases throwing millions of pounds at futile World cup bids and instead concentrates the funds towards improving youth development

  • Comment number 47.

    This stinks far too much of Bin Hamman being sacrificed to save the necks of more powerful delegates one of whom virtually demanded to his collegues that England should not get the 2018 World Cup despite having by far the best bid . The " beautiful game " seems to have taken a back seat to the meglomanic greed of a few old men .Time for FIFA to be disbanded and a more transparent democratic system put in place

  • Comment number 48.

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  • Comment number 49.

    I wonder what would happen if 6 or more of the major football nations from Europe and South America were to announce their withdrawl from the 2014 World Cup - or being too late for that, simply did not enter for the 2018 World Cup?
    would FIFA try continue with the World Cup without the major teams? Would it still be regarded a "success" with only the lesser teams, and no previous winners participating?
    Certainly FIFA would not make as much profit - won't say "earn as much profit, as they earn nothing, they simply take.
    Can not see FIFA deciding to "reform" in any way of their own volition.

  • Comment number 50.

    Apologies for the double entry. (I did at least manage to include the word "debacle" second time around). Is it now likely that Bin Hammam will spill his guts and at least take some other big names with him or will FIFA close shop and leave him to carry the can? I fail to see how he'll want to protect others after he's been hung out to dry like this

  • Comment number 51.

    How come there is so little comment regarding Russia's winning bid.....one of the most corrupt countries on the planet with a history of racial intolerance especially evident at football matches.....are you journos too worried about Polonium sandwiches ??

  • Comment number 52.

    It's marvellous to see the FIFA ethics committee is taking a tough line with corruption by individual within the organisation which was set up for the benefit of football worldwide. Warner and Bin Hamman, two of Blatter's closest allies in his 'FIFA family' have been hung out to dry. Curiously Bin Hamman has only been charged for indicretions prior to his challenge to Blatter whilst Blatter was allowed to fall on his sword with dignity, only to return to type by announcing that handing over 'gifts' has been part of the FIFA culture for years and therefore on Blatter's watch.

    Which begs the question how did FIFA's not know what was going on under his nose when two of his senior colleagues did? One is left with only two conclusions. Either Blatter knew and was therefore party to the corruption or he didn't know and therefore too blissfully ignorant to run FIFA.

  • Comment number 53.

    re 52 (if it's still there!) bad edit as it was obviously Warner who was allowed to fall on his sword.

    The key issue still remains. The endemic corruption that is now admitted to at FIFA was taking place on Blatter's watch. So how did he not know of it before?

    Blatter is right about cleaning up FIFA. It's just that he is hardly the man to do it.

  • Comment number 54.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 55.

    Simple. Don't watch any international football. Dirty as the day is long! Blatter needs to be removed and someone with a bit of integrity installed - the likes of Ian Holloway, anyone?

  • Comment number 56.

    Warner hung out to dry? Don't make me laugh!

    He has got away scott free!

  • Comment number 57.

    Sponsors need to step up to the mark and withdraw (the huge) funds that keep FIFA in the (luxurious) manner it is in.

  • Comment number 58.

    Maybe by the time Qatar get to put their show on in 2022, FIFA will be a side show as the yet to be formed but seemingly so necesary splinter organisation will be hosting their tournament somewhere else. I've got nothing against Qatar BTW - as long as they won thee vote fairly. Unfortunately for them, they won the bid at a time when it was near impossible to tell if they did win legitimately. Throw in the guitly verdict levelled at their federation leader and it doesn't look good.

    For me there is a striking similarity between Blatter and Emperor Palpatine; re-elected over and over by "senators" of dubious character, he is a law unto himself; his position is so secure he has the power to steer situations for his own ends whilst still reiterating honest and humble commitments to openness and democracy. It's not fooling anyone.

  • Comment number 59.

    It would be ashame to pull out of the brazil world cup but sometimes you need to make a stand. I think we should hold our own football competion at the same time, the commonwealth invitational cup, with with top 16 commonwealth countries plus usa, india, china, south korea etc. and really hurt fifa where it hurts, its pocket. Hold it in uk during brazil world cup, perhaps australia during russian world cup and lets say canada or south korea during the qatar world cup. Once fifa is truly transparent, then maybe we will consider participating in their future competitions. We can still take part in the uefa competitions. Get Prince William and David Beckham to promote it

  • Comment number 60.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 61.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 62.

    Hammam's only mistake was not to model himself on his Master; namely, Mr Sepp "Teflon" Blatter.

    Blatter has made himself secure by keeping "sweet" all the tinpot footballing regimes and thus maintaining their block vote. It's time the mainstream footballing nations broke away from the discredited FIFA.

  • Comment number 63.

    Sepp must be the moderator for this blog!

    Say anything about cash and Qatar and your post is taken away.




  • Comment number 64.

    #59. Quite a good idea. Instead of giving any wordage to the negatives (Blatter, FIFA, the world cup winning bids etc) come up with an option to counter it. I like that idea. It would be a shame if the football world had to resort to that kind of thing but it could well be necessary.

    Let's hope we can move forward in a positive and honest way eventually, but action needs to be taken before then I feel.

  • Comment number 65.

    Imho Fifa cannot have any credibility while Blatter remains.

  • Comment number 66.

    Surely part of the problem is that FIFA's powers have become undesirably and unnecessarily extensive, to the detrimwnt of national associations. Let FIFA/UEFA etc manage international competititons and matches and no more. Let national associations run their own games, introduce technilogy, vary regulations, play it as they will, with unification of rules and procedures only necessary internationally. A decentralisation of power in sport would be wholly good. And, yes, the threat of a breakaway group at this level should also remain in the table. FIFA appears to be institutionally corrupt and unable to reform itself. Blatter is far more likely to be the problem than the solution.

  • Comment number 67.

    As Etienne alludes to the people have no confidence in the man who insists on running the peoples game.

  • Comment number 68.

    A first well overdue step with respect to Hammam. The next step is a reassessment of how Qatar's World Cup bid was successful- something the German Football Association has called for. There must be some way to engineer a vote of no confidence in Blatter by the football associations through the execuitive committee. It is an allusion to believe the major associations accept Blatter even though they voted for him.

  • Comment number 69.

    Shades of Madoff , except this is Madoff Incorporated; Global; Gargantuan; beyond The Law;and devoid of shame or self respect. I hope that all the "key players" in FIFA, have all long sent their parents to rest, to at least spare them the global shame of their offspring taking the one game that still can bind humans together, into the sewers of ignominy. Yes, the current Emperor looks wonderful, in his new clothes. What a message to youngsters everywhere, which will not only put football in it's true "purse-pective", but will also generally denigrate efforts by parents and teachers to instill universal morals into new human beings. Bottom line: Champagne , mixed with swill.

  • Comment number 70.

    Blatter is well beyond retirement age. It is time for him to go. He is an old style man deluded by the TV revenues and the grandeur of his palace above Zürich. It is time that the wealth of the game went back to promoting the game at the grass roots level, particularly in underdeveloped countries, and not on the Mercedes and other perks for FIFA reps.

  • Comment number 71.


    And the football fans on the terraces will say 'So what !!'

    Its makes absolutely no difference at all.

  • Comment number 72.

    Does anyone believe that Platini would be the man to clean up FIFA. As designated protege of Blatter, he is cut too much from the same cloth. Clean House please

  • Comment number 73.

    I think Blatter's continued presence costs FIFA a lot of credibility. I'd much rather see an independent judgment on the extent and nature of corruption in this organisation

  • Comment number 74.

    Can we have an apology from all the people who wrote on the various blogs that the FA was making unfounded allegations of corruption because of sour grapes about losing the World Cup bid?

  • Comment number 75.

    All national teams should withdraw from FIFA and start their own federation. The stink of corruption at FIFA needs to be cleaned out starting at the top.

  • Comment number 76.

    Blatter takes out one of his main rivals within the FIFA for life, wonderful trick.

    The problem, Blatter himself is the crime-lord behind the mafia-like institution FIFA is, and he has only strengthened his own position. It is him that people need to take out before FIFA can actually start going in the right direction.

  • Comment number 77.

    All who follow football have been aware for a long time that Fifa has not been all it should be.
    I believe it to be a biased, devious organision and Blatter himself has to answer for the people he oversees.
    He should be removed from his post. How can we expect an honest and transparent investigation of Fifa when the same dubious characters will be involved with that investigation.
    The investigation should be carried out by an outside and indepenent agency.
    Football managers get sacked if their team does not perform.

  • Comment number 78.

    "The Code does not expressly prevent persons, subject to the jurisdiction of FIFA, either offering or providing bribes, it is just receipt which is the subject of express provision"
    James Dingemans QC on the subject of FIFA ethics.

    So, FIFA don't mind bribes being offered, but they don't want their employees accepting them. If you worked for FIFA and a bribe was offered to your brother who doesn't work for FIFA to accept on your behalf, that would be fine, according to FIFA ethics. There wouldn't even be a problem if FIFA knew that your brother had accepted a bribe on your behalf because YOU didn't accept it personally. Which is a nice touch.
    The ONLY way FIFA can rebuild any credibility is a complete reworking of its codes and practices preferably performed by an independent body who then assume the role of watchdog. Any independent body should be made up of credible, qualified individuals with no agenda other than fair play and good practice. I have always found it incredible that the organisation responsible for running world football has no former players at the highest level. Surely the people who have played the game are the only ones qualified to make decisions about it's ongoing legacy?

  • Comment number 79.

    David - the quote you gave of... "public confidence in Fifa's ability to police itself is at its lowest point ever" ...from the Secretary General of Interpol may well be true, but no-one connected with Fifa cares what the public think and whatsmore they never have, since Fifa began.
    The whole history of the organisation is one of it being concerned only with self-serving interests, not of football itself, but on how the various FA's around the world can (excuse the pun) learn how to 'keep the ball'. International football has been run exactly how the member's of Fifa want it to be run, that has been Blatters secret of success, give them (the FA's) what they want. Fifa has no interest in what the football supporting public want, never has had and unless something really dramatic occurs, never will.
    Why? Because the footballing public are by and large suckers (I include myself)! We will swallow anything the football authorities (and TV programmers) throw at us, because we are desparate for our 'footballing fix' Whats the saying "Never give a sucker and even break".... Sepp Blatter is a past master!!!


  • Comment number 80.

    Why believe FIFA over anyone, even Bin Hammam? It is as likely to be a set up as not. Blatter has motive and the power to see it through. Frankly i love football but have lost all interest in international competitions as they are overseen by a horribly self-serving bunch of morally bankrupt lizards. Why not focus on club and Olympic football and ignore the FIFA competitions perhaps they will then get the message!

  • Comment number 81.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 82.

    Thanks for the insight David. ha ha ha ha ha....... What a muddled load of nonsense.

  • Comment number 83.

    Does anyone outside England care about all of this. Lots of comments about leaving FIFA or major countries pulling out. Is there any world wide condemnation of Blatter and the FIFA antics?

  • Comment number 84.

    I think that on one level it is promising that at least some of the perpetrators of alleged corruption are being booted out, but it does seem that the only ones getting hit are those who oppose Sepp. Nothing will change properly until enough of the top 10-15 nations are sufficiently upset to challenge the status quo. In the same way that the G14 clubs influenced UEFA to form the Champions League, the big nations need to do the same with FIFA.
    Sadly most are spineless so dont expect any change any time soon unless of course they challenge the supreme leader as Bin Hamman dared to do.

    Ultimately I doubt that Qatar getting the world cup had much to do with Sepp at all. Aside from the blatant stupidity of holding the event in such conditions, my biggest concern, which I have heard very little comment about elsewhere is on a footballing basis.
    Whilst one can understand moving the world cup to encourage growth in the game in developing areas, surely giving a country sitting at 100+ in FIFAs own rankings a place in the tournament is just madness? Might it not be better to say to these countries that they can only bid to host the world cup when they get into say the top 32 ranked countries or have qualified for a certain number of final tournaments. That way they are not taking a place away from a more deserving nation.

    However that would be sensible and would eliminate some of the very rich nations who want to buy the tournament and we all know who benefits from that.....

  • Comment number 85.

    What about the people who accepted the bribes?

  • Comment number 86.

    I am getting a consortium together to bid for the 2026 World Cup in Antartica.We are considering offering Sepp Blatter and the voting executive of FIFA a pair of King Penguins each for an inducement. Do you think this is ethical?

  • Comment number 87.

    If FIFA is to regain the confidence of the public in its integrity, this should only be a stepping stone towards more severe and harsh regulations towards bribery and corruption. Surely there are plenty more such corrupted individuals after all these allegations. Warner should be more severely dealt with. There are very serious charges against him and FIFA should conduct a thorough investigation into his involvement without just letting him go free. After all what would FIFA have done if Bin Hamman had retired from football before the hearing. Would they let him go? Surely not! Also I was astonished that Russia were awarded the 2022 WC. Sure it has the resources,the footballing history and a suitable environment to host a WC, but what about the racism abundant over there. Racism is a topic that FIFA constantly speaks about and is against. Even at the recent Women's WC, FIFA's campaign to stop racism was on display. But I remember that recently a banana was thrown at Roberto Carlos during a match and also when Peter Odemwinge(West Brom) moved from Locomotive Moscow to West Brom the fans displayed a banner stating that they were very glad to get rid of him. Even a well known russian club coach said that he did not hire any black players because of his fear that the players would be ridiculed.

  • Comment number 88.

    And forget about getting a visa for qatar if you have an israeli stamp in your passport; not to mention the near slave labour that will be employed from the subcontinent to build the stadiums and infrastructure- racism will be on display at both the russian and qatari cups

  • Comment number 89.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 90.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 91.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 92.

    Unfortunately there hasn't been anyone on the executive to fight for transparency, honesty and integrity. The IOC only seemed to change once Samaranch retired after 21 years in post. Perhaps the solution is to limit how long thee people can be the executive or president. Blatter has been president since 1998; prior to that he was general secretary for 18 years.

    Another issue to consider is the British vice president. Jim Boyce seems like yet another committee man like his predecessor Geoff Thompson. From interviews I have heard I don't think Mr Boyce will do anything to change FIFA from the inside.

  • Comment number 93.

    @92.At 16:07 24th Jul 2011, Phillip wrote:
    ............................................................
    Total agree with you , there should be a limit on time spent in positions of power within FIFA . 8-12 years president max 16 years senior position, including federations , eg. 8 years UEFA president 4 years FIFA exco 4 years FIFA president .
    This would stop the back scratching and assitance to a degree . It would also mean those invovled in any election bid would have to set there stall out in advance , stoping the promises for long term gain of federations and indidviduals .

    As for Jim Boyce , as he said "Sep Blatter is a friend of Nothern Ireland " . His stall is set out already .

  • Comment number 94.

    Qatar have the honour of hosting the World Cup in 2022. The result is the same. They win, England lose.

  • Comment number 95.

    Dr JOSEPH SEPP BLATTER is indeed the right man to steer the Fifa ship!The UK Govt ,press,Worldsoccer should substantiate the corruption allegations there are always paddling against Dr Blatter.The UK Govt,press &cohorts have been tarnashing the image &person of Dr Blatter without any tangible evidence !.All this can be attributed to arrogance ,aloofness & sourgrapes on the part of UK Govt 4 failing to win the hosting rights of 2018 Fifa Worldcup.What they fail to realise is that they dont have any jurisdiction over FIFA.The Fifa statutes are very clear about non GOVT interference.Long reign &long live Dr Joseph Sepp Blatter !

  • Comment number 96.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 97.

    @95.At 17:15 24th Jul 2011, tuffymacca wrote:
    4 failing to win the hosting rights of 2018 Fifa Worldcup
    ...............................................................................................
    Sorry but to remind you the "fresh" accusations were the broadcast the night before the WC vote . Hardly an after taught , so no sourgrapes ....unless panaroma can time travel . Not a very good point . Really .

    @94.At 17:15 24th Jul 2011, Henry Tudor wrote:
    Qatar have the honour of hosting the World Cup in 2022. The result is the same. They win, England lose.
    .........................................................................................
    England didnt bid for 2022 . You lose .

  • Comment number 98.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 99.

    Still no word from the Beeb as to their reason for boycotting the Copa America.

    An oversight? A mystery? A scandal?

    You decide!

  • Comment number 100.

    hay she-ra ,
    A muppet?
    I have decided .

 

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